You Send Me

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"You Send Me"
Single by Sam Cooke
from the album Sam Cooke
ReleasedSeptember 7, 1957
RecordedJune 1, 1957
StudioRadio Recorders, Hollywood
Songwriter(s)Sam Cooke (mistakenly credited to L.C. Cook)
Producer(s)Bumps Blackwell
Sam Cooke singles chronology
"You Send Me"
"I'll Come Running Back to You"

"You Send Me" is a song written and originally recorded by American singer Sam Cooke, released as a single in 1957 by Keen Records. Produced by Bumps Blackwell and arranged and conducted by René Hall. The song, Cooke's debut single, was a massive commercial success, becoming a No. 1 hit on both Billboard's Rhythm & Blues Records chart and the Billboard Hot 100.

It was named as one of the 500 most important rock and roll recordings by the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. In April 2010, the song ranked No. 115 in Rolling Stone magazine's The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.[1]

In addition to the original version of Sam Cooke, "You Send Me" has received numerous covers over the years, the most important being the versions of Teresa Brewer (1957), Aretha Franklin (1968), Ponderosa Twins Plus One (1971) and The Manhattans (1985).

Sam Cooke version (1957)[edit]


Cooke wrote "You Send Me" but gave the writing credit to his younger brother L.C. (who used the original family spelling "Cook") because he did not want his own publisher to profit from the song.[2] He had also hoped L.C. would record the song himself.[3] Cooke made a demo recording of the song featuring only his own guitar accompaniment in the winter[clarification needed] of 1955. The first recording of the track was made in New Orleans in December 1956 in the same sessions which produced "Lovable", the first release outside the gospel field for Cooke (credited on that single as Dale Cook). The classic version of "You Send Me" was cut in Los Angeles in June 1957 and was issued as a single with another track from the same session: a version of "Summertime", as the debut release on the Keen label[4] founded by brothers John and Alex Siamas; this release marked the first single credited to "Sam Cooke" (whose true surname was Cook). Although "Summertime" was the intended A-side, disc jockeys favored "You Send Me", which broke nationally that October to reach No. 1 for a two-week stay in December 1957, with sales estimated at a 1.5 million units. "Overnight, with a single song, Sam Cooke"—who had spent the summer of 1957 living in his producer's apartment—"became a secular superstar, with audiences consisting of black and white, men and women, young and old."[5]

As was common practice in the 1950s when it was unusual for hits in the black R&B market to crossover to the Pop charts, a cover version of "You Send Me" aimed at the Pop charts was cut by the white singer Teresa Brewer[4] and released in October 1957. Symptomatic of the changing music scene, Cooke's original was able to repeat its No. 1 R&B chart performance in the Pop field, eclipsing Brewer's version. Brewer's version of "You Send Me" reached as high as No. 8 on the Hot 100, her first and only top 10 hit since "Mutual Admiration Society" the year before, and her final Top 20 hit.[6]


Since its release, the song has become a landmark record of the soul genre, which Cooke helped create. It was named as one of the 500 most important rock and roll recordings by the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. In 2005, the song was voted No. 115 by representatives of the music industry and press in Rolling Stone magazine's The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

In 1998, the song was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.[7]


The B-side of Sam Cooke's original single "You Send Me" contains a cover version of the song "Summertime", which was also recorded by Cooke in 1957 for the album Songs by Sam Cooke. It was written between 1933 and 1934 by George Gershwin and DuBose Heyward (also co-credited to Ira Gershwin). The song was originally recorded in 1935 by Abbie Mitchell for the musical opera Porgy and Bess. Sam Cooke's version for "Summertime" was also released as a single and reached No. 81 on the US chart Billboard Hot 100.

Chart Positions[edit]

Year Chart Position
1957 Black Singles Chart 1
Pop Singles Chart 1
1958 UK Singles Chart 29


On "You Send Me" and "Summertime":

The Manhattans version (1985)[edit]

"You Send Me"
Single by The Manhattans
from the album Too Hot to Stop It
B-side"You're Gonna Love Being Loved By Me"[9]
ReleasedFebruary 1985[9]
at Celestial Studios[10]
Length4:10 (Album full version)[10]
3:50 (Single edited version)[9]
LabelColumbia Records[9]
Songwriter(s)Sam Cooke[9]
Producer(s)Morrie Brown[9]
Mighty M Productions Ltd.[10]
The Manhattans singles chronology
"Forever by Your Side"
"You Send Me"
"Don't Say No"
Music video
"You Send Me" by The Manhattans
(Official Music Video)
on YouTube

"You Send Me" was covered in 1985 by popular American R&B vocal group The Manhattans, whose version was recorded for the album Too Hot to Stop It, released the same year. This new version of the song was also released as a single and charted on the major music charts of the United States, Canada and New Zealand. The Manhattans version peaked No. 8 on the US Billboard Adult Contemporary chart and No. 11 on the US Cash Box Black Singles, as well as in the RPM Adult Contemporary chart in Canada.

Chart Positions[edit]

Chart (1985) Peak
Canada Adult Contemporary (RPM)[11] 11
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[12] 48
US Adult Contemporary (Billboard)[13] 8
US Jukebox Programmer R&B (Cash Box)[14] 6
US Top 100 Black Singles (Cash Box)[15] 11
US R&B Chart (Billboard)[16] 20
US The Hot 100 (Billboard)[17] 81


  • Lead vocal – Gerald Alston[10]
  • Backing vocals – Winfred "Blue" Lovett, Edward "Sonny" Bivins, Kenneth "Wally" Kelly[10]
  • Writer – Sam Cooke[10]
  • Producer – Morrie Brown[10]
  • Arranged By (Background Vocals) – Morrie Brown, Winfred Lovett[10]
  • Arranged By (Rhythm), Drum Programming – Lloyd Landesman, Morrie Brown[10]
  • Keyboards, Synthesizer – Lloyd Landesman[10]
  • Soloist, Saxophone – Chris Cioe[10]
  • Synthesizer (Strings) – Morrie Brown[10]
  • Recorded at Celestial Studios[10]
  • Produced for Mighty M Productions, Ltd.[10]


The B-side of the 7" single contains the song "You're Gonna Love Being Loved By Me"[9] which was also recorded by The Manhattans in 1985 for the album Too Hot to Stop It[10] It was written by lead vocalist Gerald Alston, with Barbara Morr and Mark Chapman,[9] and produced by the musicians John V. Anderson and Steve Williams,[9] authors of "Crazy".[18]

Track listing[edit]

7" Single[edit]

Side Song Length Interpreters Writer/composer Producers Original album Recording year
A-side "You Send Me"[9] 3:50[9] The Manhattans[9] Sam Cooke[9] Morrie Brown[9] Too Hot to Stop It[10] 1985[10]
B-side "You're Gonna Love Being Loved By Me"[9] 3:50[9] The Manhattans[9] Gerald Alston,
Barbara Morr,
Mark Chapman[9]
John V. Anderson,
Steve Williams[9]
Too Hot to Stop It[10] 1985[10]
  • The full length of "You Send Me" on the album Too Hot to Stop It is 4:10.[10] The length of 3:50 on the single is an edited version of the song.[9]

12" Single[edit]

Side Song Length Interpreters Writer/composer Producers Original album Recording year
A-side 1 "You Send Me"[19] 3:50[19] The Manhattans[19] Sam Cooke[19] Morrie Brown[19] Too Hot to Stop It[10] 1985[10]
A-side 2 "You're Gonna Love Being Loved By Me"[19] 3:50[19] The Manhattans[19] Gerald Alston,
Barbara Morr,
Mark Chapman[19]
John V. Anderson,
Steve Williams[19]
Too Hot to Stop It[10] 1985[10]
B-side 1 "Kiss and Say Goodbye"[19] 3:29[19] The Manhattans[19] Winfred Lovett[20] Bobby Martin,
The Manhattans[20]
The Manhattans[20] 1976[20]
B-side 2 "Hurt"[19] 3:02[19] The Manhattans[19] Jimmie Crane,
Al Jacobs[21]
Bobby Martin,
The Manhattans[21]
The Manhattans[21] 1976[21]
B-side 3 "Shining Star"[19] 3:48[19] The Manhattans[19] Leo Graham,
Paul Richmond[22]
Leo Graham[22] After Midnight[22] 1980[22]

Other cover versions[edit]


"You Send Me" has been covered by a number of artists across different fields of music, including Jesse Belvin (1957), Nat King Cole, Teresa Brewer, Michael Bolton, The Drifters, The Everly Brothers, The Four Seasons, Bobby Vee (1960), José Feliciano, Aretha Franklin, Steven Houghton, Nicolette Larson, Steve Miller Band, Van Morrison, Otis Redding, Sam & Dave, Percy Sledge, Roy Ayers, Paul & Paula (1963), The Supremes, The Manhattans, Rachelle Ferrell, Fairground Attraction, Marcia Hines, Whitney Houston, Gregory Porter (2016), the Chicks, Ponderosa Twins Plus One, Lynda Carter from At Last (2009) and Judie Tzuke on The Beauty Of Hindsight (2003).

In the United Kingdom, Rod Stewart released "You Send Me" as part of a medley with "Bring It On Home to Me" and charted it on the UK Singles Chart at No. 7 as a double A-side with "Farewell". Stewart later recorded the song with Chaka Khan for his 2005 album Thanks for the Memory: The Great American Songbook, Volume IV.

In Hong Kong, the song was covered by Deanie Ip in Cantonese with name "飄" in 1985.

Other chart performance[edit]

Teresa Brewer version[edit]
Year Chart Position
1957 Pop Singles 8
Aretha Franklin version[edit]
Year Chart Position
1968 R&B Singles 28
Pop Singles Chart 56
Ponderosa Twins Plus One version[edit]
Year Chart Position
1971 Best Selling Soul Singles 23[23]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time". Rolling Stone. April 2010. Retrieved September 28, 2015.
  2. ^ Bruce Eder. "L.C. Cook | Biography & History". AllMusic. Retrieved 2016-08-29.
  3. ^ Dream Boogie: The Triumph of Sam Cooke by Peter Guralnick
  4. ^ a b Gilliland, John (1969). "Show 17 - The Soul Reformation: More on the evolution of rhythm and blues. [Part 3]" (audio). Pop Chronicles. University of North Texas Libraries.
  5. ^ Gulla, Bob (2008). Icons of R&B. Westport CT: Greenwood Publishing Group. pp. 114–116. ISBN 978-0-313-34044-4.
  6. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits: Eighth Edition. Record Research. p. 83.
  7. ^
  8. ^ "Clifton White, Guitarist for Sam Cooke". Chicago Tribune. 5 April 1998.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t 45cat. "The Manhattans - You Send Me / You're Gonna Love Being Loved By Me 7" (1985)". Retrieved March 9, 2018.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x Discogs (1985). "The Manhattans – Too Hot To Stop It (1985)". Discogs. Retrieved March 9, 2018.
  11. ^ Library and Archives Canada. "RPM Adult Contemporary" (PDF). Retrieved March 10, 2018.
  12. ^ "THE MANHATTANS - YOU SEND ME (SONG)". Retrieved March 10, 2018.
  13. ^ Billboard. "THE MANHATTANS - Adult Contemporary Songs". Billboard. Retrieved March 10, 2018.
  14. ^ Cash Box Magazine. "CASH BOX The Jukebox Programmer R&B" (PDF). Retrieved March 10, 2018.
  15. ^ Cash Box Magazine. "CASH BOX Top 100 Black Singles" (PDF). Retrieved March 10, 2018.
  16. ^ Billboard. "THE MANHATTANS - Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs". Billboard. Retrieved March 10, 2018.
  17. ^ Billboard. "THE MANHATTANS - The Hot 100 Songs". Billboard. Retrieved March 10, 2018.
  18. ^ Discogs (October 2014). "The Manhattans – Forever By Your Side (1983)". Discogs. Retrieved February 21, 2018.
  19. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s Discogs (1985). "The Manhattans - You Send Me 12" (1985)". Discogs. Retrieved March 12, 2018.
  20. ^ a b c d Discogs (1976). "The Manhattans - Kiss And Say Goodbye / Wonderful World Of Love (1976)". Discogs. Retrieved March 12, 2018.
  21. ^ a b c d Discogs (October 1976). "The Manhattans - Hurt / We'll Have Forever To Love (1976)". Discogs. Retrieved March 12, 2018.
  22. ^ a b c d Discogs (1980). "The Manhattans - After Midnight (1980)". Discogs. Retrieved March 12, 2018.
  23. ^ "Soul Singles chart". Billboard. Vol. 83, no. 46. November 1971. p. 50. ISSN 0006-2510.


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